Wendy Collins Perdue, an associate dean and professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center, has been named the next dean of University of Richmond’s School of Law, effective July 1.
A prolific scholar of civil procedure and conflict of laws, as well as land use and public health, Perdue has served at Georgetown since 1982. Upon graduation from Duke Law School, she clerked for Anthony M. Kennedy, then a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge and now associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. She went on to practice law in Washington, D.C., before joining Georgetown’s law faculty.
She succeeds John G. Douglass, Richmond law dean since 2008 and a professor of law at the school since 1996.
“Wendy Perdue is a creative, accomplished dean, recognized nationally for scholarship and her academic leadership at Georgetown Law,” said Stephen Allred, Richmond’s provost and vice president for academic affairs, in announcing Perdue’s appointment. “She will work closely with our law school faculty, staff and students to take the University of Richmond Law School to a higher level. She was the clear first choice of our stakeholders, and we’re delighted she will be joining us this summer.”
Perdue expressed enthusiasm for the challenges that Richmond’s law school and legal education face in the coming years.
“There are many changes happening in the legal profession, and legal services will be delivered in many different ways, but I believe the need for well educated lawyers will continue to be strong,” Perdue said. “The best lawyers combine intellect with imagination, and rigorous analysis with an understanding of human complexity.”
“Richmond is uniquely well situated to respond to today’s challenges in legal education. It combines the rigor and intensity of a nationally recognized faculty of scholars with the individual attention that a small school can offer. It integrates theory and practice through its many clinics and tradition of community engagement, and it builds on the many strengths of an integrated, interdisciplinary university.”
Perdue has held increasing responsibilities at Georgetown Law since chairing the law school’s long-range planning committee in 1997-98. She became associate dean for research in 1998, then for the J.D. program from 1999-2004. In 2005, she was appointed associate dean for graduate law programs, adding responsibility for the J.D. program again last year. She has served on university committees for finance, mission statement, capital campaign, and rank and tenure.
While a member of Georgetown Law faculty, she also was vice-chair of the Montgomery County (Maryland) planning board, the governing board of a state agency with annual operating and capital budgets of more than $100 million.
In the legal profession, Perdue is vice president of Order of the Coif, the legal education honor
society. She has served the Association of American Law Schools as chair of its membership review committee, the sections on civil procedure and conflict of laws, and as a member of the nominations committee. Perdue also served on the Duke Law School board of visitors and was on the editorial board of the Journal of Legal Education.
She has published two books, two book chapters and 19 journal articles in her legal specialties.
Perdue earned her bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College.